Saturday, I planned to leave work no later than one and a half hours before the meeting time with Mr. A for dinner. As the day presses on, it becomes apparent that we won’t be done at work. I decide that I can leave as late a 1 hour before and still get home, cleaned up and to the restaurant. I coordinate my departure with a coworker and let Wife know. As the clock winds down to the 1 hour mark, so does our task. We are on track to finish a bit early and I start to feel comfortable. Well, we hit a bit of a snag and things take a bit longer, but we finish with exactly 1 hour to go. I plan to make my exit. However, our lead wants to do a quick wrap up and discuss our next steps. OK, that should take five minutes. Except today it drags on and on. I find myself trying to quietly escape as I hand my coworker a note with my cell number and ask him to call me to let me know if we are working on Sunday. I dash out of the building to my car.
This normally wouldn’t be a problem. We would just call our dinner acquaintance, and let them know we were running late. However, Mr. A did not respond back to our last email in which we requested his phone number. Red flag? You bet, but not out of character for Mr. A. Remember that he has always taken a bit of time to read his email. So there is a possibility that he didn't get it.
So here I am, rushing to get home and to get ready for our dinner date, when we have some doubt that Mr. A will even show up. I have Wife pick out an outfit and lay it out for me. I run in, head straight to the bedroom, strip down, clean up, and get dressed. We’re out the door only a couple minutes late. We will probably make it there on time.
On the way we review a printout of Mr. A’s AFF profile. I would have liked to have time to review our email exchanges, but of course there was no time for that. We reviewed the questions we had previously written to ask at this meeting and added a few more. We are all set to pull into the parking lot right on time. Then we had one more set back.
We had never been to this restaurant before, but knew where it was. Or so we thought. We pulled into the parking lot of the shopping center, and the restaurant wasn’t there. We quickly figured out where it was and got there with only a short delay. We were less than five minutes late.
We walk in and look around. No single men looking anxious. We ask for a table for three. The place is small and not crowded at all. They bring out warm towels and we order drinks. I have a beer and Wife orders the 4 shot sampler of flavored sake. We’re glad that we made it (close enough to) on time and didn’t make him wait.
We talk about our upcoming meeting. The nervousness of the last two first meetings is not there. We’re getting to be veterans at this. I guess once you meet a young black man (oh, didn’t I tell you Mr. Z was black?) in public where everyone knows something sexual is going on between him and Wife, you know you can handle any of these meetings.
So now we wait.
8 years ago